VIDEO: Shimmy Mob shakes up onlookers at Stuart Park

The flash mob-type belly dance event took place for the first time in Kelowna on May 11

People browsing at the Kelowna Farmers’ and Crafters’ Market got more than they bargained for last weekend.

At around 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, shoppers were surprised by Kelowna’s first “Shimmy Mob,” a flash mob-type belly dance event meant to raise awareness about domestic abuse.

The Kelowna Shimmy Mob coincided with many others happening around the world for World Belly Dance Day, the second Saturday of May.

READ MORE: Belly dancers shimmy to aid victims of abuse

Leona Finlayson, who has been involved with the event since it originated in Vancouver eight years ago, led about 15 women dancers from the market to three other locations around the city throughout the day.

She said their first performance was more of a flash mob than the others.

At the market, she said the women covered their T-shirts with hoodies or sweatshirts until they were in position. They only put their hip scarves on when the music was about to start.

As the day progressed, she said, they kept their T-shirts and hip scarves visible to increase awareness of the event.

“Almost like opening up a present in the morning and then you’re showing off the present all day long,” she said.

The other three performances took place at Stuart Park, The Sails and Vibrant Vines, where the 2019 HM Commercial Group Ride for Autism ended later in the day.

At each location, Finlayson and the group performed choreography for one song played from a portable music player, wearing matching orange “Shimmy Mob” T-shirts.

The dancers accepted donations for the Kelowna Women’s Shelter after each of their performances.

Finlayson told the Capital News that the women are planning to perform their Shimmy Mob choreography one last time at Yamas Greek Restaurant.

Details for the event will be made available on her Facebook page and donations to the shelter will be accepted after that performance.

She also said belly dancing is a great way to create change when it comes to domestic abuse, “one shimmy at a time.”

“It’s about inviting women into a safe place where they can learn how their body works and developing that confidence in who they are and where they are at in life,” she said.

“I’ve seen in the last 20 years how this dance form changes women.”

READ MORE: Local musicians take part in flash mob



karissa.gall@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Kelowna hockey seasons return in 6 weeks

The Kelowna Chiefs are the latest to release their upcoming schedule

WWII hero draws huge crowd in Kelowna

Around 1,000 people came out to hear the story of Marthe Cohn, the heroic Jewish French spy

$1.4 million Rowcliffe Park development in Kelowna complete

The first phase of the park was completed in 2017

Two Kelowna robbers have been court charged

Paul Davis Houle and Tyler Brice Rathbone face break and enter charges

Fire destroys storage unit business in Kelowna

The fire was reported at Hawkeye Holdings just after 2 p.m. Thursday

Feds lowered poverty line, reducing the number of seniors in need: documents

Liberals introduced a poverty line that was below the prior low-income cutoff

BCHL: Alberni Valley Bulldogs have been sold

Victoria company has purchased BCHL team, but will keep it in Port Alberni

“Does Kirby care?” B.C. First Nation’s group using geo-targeted ads in Houston, Texas for justice

The Heiltsuk Tribal Council has called out Kirby Corporation for the Nathan E. Stewart oil spill

Trudeau announces $79M investment for 118 more public transit buses across B.C.

Contributions from municipal to federal level to fund more buses in a bid to cut commutes

B.C. woman wins record $2.1 million on casino slot machine

‘That night was so surreal … I wasn’t able to sleep or eat for the first two days,’ she said

Arrest made in vandalism of the former home of man charged with South Okanagan murders

RCMP confirmed one person has been arrested in relation to the alleged vandalism

Respected wildlife artist in the Okanagan dies

According to a post by his family, Terry Isaac died on July 16

After B.C. dad’s death, Technical Safety BC wants changes to trampoline park rules

Jay Greenwood, 46, did ‘a series of acrobatic manoeuvres prior to a fall that caused serious injury and cardiac arrest’

Auto theft numbers decline in Princeton; thefts from vehicles on the increase

Policing statistics show changing trends in rural community

Most Read